Starting out is tough, whether it be a new career, a new location or even a blog like this one. It's also tough having a distinguished presence in the midst of all the other designers, runners, bloggers/vloggers, veterans, etc. This is what I've come to realize throughout the last several years. You have to be bold, put yourself out there and accept the criticism. It's the only way to grow, professionally and personally... which is what I strive for on a daily basis.
I also want people to know who I am - not just as a designer - but as an individual. I want people to identify with me on a personal level and understand what I'm about. All of the decisions we make are a direct result of everything we've learned in our lives up until that particular moment in time. And that's part of what design is - understanding stories, connecting and empathizing with our users or target audience. We have to dig deep to discover how to engage people in memorable ways. That involves authenticity and communication.
What's my story?
In short, I'm a 33 year old designer, runner, photographer, adventurer and veteran who's seen and done a lot of different shit. I feel like I can't really be defined in a few simple words though, considering everything I've been through.
I've held over 25 different jobs. I've been a carpenter, a sprint car driver, helped build/paint homes, done metal fabrication, temped as a camp counselor, volunteered at events/festivals, worked at a car dealership changing oil & tires, acted as a promoter/model, worked as a line cook, performed on stage as a dancer, slaved through retail with their terrible corporate music and worked as a Persian translator in the Intel Community.
I've lived in each geographical region of the U.S. for a good chunk of time and I've traveled to 13 different countries, 3 of which I've actually resided in. I now call Germany my home.
I've spent over 1,000 hours in the air over the mountains of Afghanistan and the desert in Iraq, I've gotten lost running through crime-infested neighborhoods at 2am in cities I'd never been to before, I've lost a parent at 24 years old and I've actually had a good friend save my life.
Why am I telling you this?
I want to be real with my fellow designers, clients and friends. I want to connect and work with people who understand the significance of investing in relationships. I want people to know that I'm not just another designer who went to university at 18 and has done nothing but that over the last 10 years.
I firmly believe there's an inherent value in getting lost in life; in straying off the main path. When you get outside of your comfort zone and expose yourself to different perspectives and challenges, you benefit greatly with skills that are applicable in any job or situation.
So what can you expect?
I had originally wanted to blog solely about my running, considering that it's such a huge part of my life. Running is my therapy and it's where I find clarity. However, I have about a thousand other interests. So we'll see what it evolves into over time, but for now, expect it to cover anything regarding fitness & health, design, photography and tech.
I hope this proves to be beneficial not only for myself, but for others out there who may be searching for knowledge, ideas, support or collaboration. I'm always looking for people of kindred spirits and I'm definitely looking forward to sharing more of myself with the world.